Local experts say kids under 5 should get COVID-19 vaccine

Published: Jul. 6, 2022 at 11:20 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - It’s been two weeks since the CDC’s announcement that kids under 5 can get vaccinated against COVID.

The week of June 30, Georgia saw 701 cases for kids up to age 4.

While some parents may be on the fence, local doctors say it’s more important than ever to get the shot.

After talking to vaccine locations, there has been a steady flow of kids under five getting the vaccine.

“Will it work as well as we had hoped? Yes. Will this help kids get back to school? I think it will. Will it make it less likely they get it at school and bring it home? Yes,” said Dr. Rodger MacArthur, infectious disease expert at Augusta University Health.

MacArthur studies infectious diseases and says even for him, the vaccine for kids under five is a tough decision.

“I have two kids, but they’re grown, and I’m glad I don’t have to make that decision right now,” he said.

The efficacy or how much the vaccine lowers the risk of getting sick is still not fully known due to the lack of studies on younger kids. Even with the uncertainty, there are still some positives from the limited trials.

“I haven’t heard anything bad about it, so everyone is convinced about the safety,” said MacArthur.

Safety including preventing long-term effects.

“Some kids get very sick when they get naturally infected. With the delta variant, they got very sick, and some had very serious conditions,” he said.

Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are currently available for kids. For Pfizer, kids have to receive three doses and two for Moderna.

To find a COVID-19 vaccine location near you, visit vaccines.gov.

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